"Chicano writers from El Paso are the most progressive, open-minded, far-reaching, and inclusive writers of them all."

Octavio Romano

Friday, May 14, 2010

The Last Supper of Chicano Heroes wins the Southwest Book Award; New Literature in May

The Last Supper of Chicano Heroes: Selected Works by Jose Antonio Burciaga wins the Southwest Book Award. 

Congrads to Mimi Gladstein and Daniel Chacon and a posthumous congrads to Tony!
Deceptively simple prose. In this anthology and tribute, Mimi Gladstein and Daniel Chacón bring together dozens of remarkable examples of Burciaga’s work. His work never demonstrates machismo or sexism, as he believed strongly that all Chicano voices are equally valuable.

Best known for his books Weedee Peepo, Drink Cultura, and Undocumented Love, Burciaga was also a poet, cartoonist, founding member of the comedy troupe Cultura Clash, and a talented muralist whose well-known work “The Last Supper of Chicano Heroes” became almost more famous than the man. 

This first and only collection of Burciaga’s work features thirty-eight illustrations and incorporates previously unpublished essays and drawings, including selections from his manuscript “The Temple Gang,” a memoir he was writing at the time of his death. In addition, Gladstein and Chacón address Burciaga’s importance to Chicano letters.

A joy to read, this rich compendium is an important contribution not only to Chicano literature but also to the preservation of the creative, spiritual, and political voice of a talented and passionate man.

So, drink your cultural and order today at: http://www.uapress.arizona.edu/BOOKS/bid1943.htm

Also of note is the photo on the cover by El Pasoan Cynthia Haines (Farah).



Below are a few books coming out in May 2010. Keep reading raza.

The first book we feature is Confetti Girl (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers 0316029564) by Diana Lopez. The book revolves around Apolonia "Lina"Flores who is a sock enthusiast, a volleyball player, a science lover, and a girl who's just looking for answers. Even though her house is crammed full of books (her dad's a bibliophile), she's having trouble figuring out some very big questions, like why her dad seems to care about books more than her, why her best friend's divorced mom is obsessed with making cascarones (hollowed eggshells filled with colorful confetti), and, most of all, why her mom died last year.  Like colors in cascarones, Lina's life is a rainbow of people, interests, and unexpected changes. This is Lopez' first novel for young readers and its a clever and honest story about a young Latina girl navigating growing pains in her South Texan city.

Diana (pronounced DEE-ANNA) López is a native of Corpus Christi, Texas. Her adult novel, Sofia's Saints, was published by Bilingual Review Press in 2002, and she is a contributing author to Hecho en Tejas: An Anthology of Texas Mexican Literature. Other works include short stories published in Chicago Quarterly Review, The Sycamore Review, and New Texas. She now teaches English at St. Philip's College in San Antonio. This is her first middle grade novel.

The Red Umbrella (Knopf Books for Young Readers ISBN-10: 037586190) is a new one out from Christina Gonzalez. A moving tale of a 14-year-old girl's journey from Cuba to America as part of Operation Pedro Pan—an organized exodus of more than 14,000 unaccompanied children, whose parents sent them away to escape Fidel Castro's revolution.

In 1961, two years after the Communist revolution, Lucía Álvarez still leads a carefree life, dreaming of parties and her first crush. But when the soldiers come to her sleepy Cuban town, everything begins to change. Freedoms are stripped away. Neighbors disappear. Her friends feel like strangers. And her family is being watched.

As the revolution's impact becomes more oppressive, Lucía's parents make the heart-wrenching decision to send her and her little brother to the United States—on their own.  Suddenly plunked down in Nebraska with well-meaning strangers, Lucía struggles to adapt to a new country, a new language, a new way of life. 

But what of her old life? Will she ever see her home or her parents again? And if she does, will she still be the same girl?  The Red Umbrella is a moving story of country, culture, family, and the true meaning of home.

Christina Diaz Gonzalez based this powerful novel on the experiences of her parents, and of the more than 14,000 other unaccompanied minors who came to the United States through Operation Pedro Pan. This mass exodus of children is a little-known and fascinating piece of history, and Gonzalez has created a story that brings that history vibrantly to life.

Gonzalez practiced law for several years before returning to her childhood passion for stories and writing. The Red Umbrella is her first novel.

Christina Diaz Gonzalez lives in Miami, Florida, with her husband and two sons. You can visit her on the Web at www.christinagonzalez.com.

Laura G. Gutierrez has put out Performing Mexicanidad: Vendidas y Cabareteras on the Transnational Stage (University of Texas Press ISBN-13:978-0292722880)

Using interdisciplinary performance studies and cultural studies frameworks, Gutiérrez examines the cultural representation of queer sexuality in the contemporary cultural production of Mexican female and Chicana performance and visual artists. 

In particular, she locates the analytical lenses of feminist theory and queer theory in a central position to interrogate Mexican female dissident sexualities in transnational public culture.

This is the first book-length study to wed performance studies and queer theory in examining the performative/performance work of important contemporary Mexicana and Chicana cultural workers. 

It proposes that the creations of several important artists--Chicana visual artist Alma López; the Mexican political cabareteras Astrid Hadad, Jesusa Rodríguez, Liliana Felipe, and Regina Orozco; the Chicana performance artist Nao Bustamante; and the Mexican video artist Ximena Cuevas--unsettle heterosexual national culture. 

In doing so, they are not only challenging heterosexist and nationalist discourses head-on, but are also participating in the construction of a queer world-making project. 

Treating the notion of dis-comfort as a productive category in these projects advances feminist and queer theories by offering an insightful critical movement suggesting that queer worlds are simultaneously spaces of desire, fear, and hope.

Gutiérrez demonstrates how arenas formerly closed to female performers are now providing both an artistic outlet and a powerful political tool that crosses not only geographic borders but social, sexual, political, and class boundaries as well, and deconstructs the relationships among media, hierarchies of power, and the cultures of privilege.

About the LAURA G. GUTIÉRREZ - Gutierrez is Associate Professor in the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at the University of Arizona. 



Another new book is Postnationalism in Chicana/o Literature and Culture (University of Texas Press ISBN-10: 0292719078) by Eliee D. Hernandez. 

Hernandez is an Associate Professor of Women's Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, specializing in gender, sexuality, and globalization. 

Hernandez charts how in recent decades, Chicana/o literary and cultural productions have dramatically shifted from a nationalist movement that emphasized unity to one that openly celebrates diverse experiences. Charting this transformation, Postnationalism in Chicana/o Literature and Culture looks to the late 1970s, during a resurgence of global culture, as a crucial turning point whose reverberations in twenty-first-century late capitalism have been profound.

Arguing for a postnationalism that documents the radical politics and aesthetic processes of the past while embracing contemporary cultural and sociopolitical expressions among Chicana/o peoples, Hernández links the multiple forces at play in these interactions.

Reconfiguring text-based analysis, she looks at the comparative development of movements within women's rights and LGBTQI activist circles. Incorporating economic influences, this unique trajectory leads to a new conception of border studies as well, rethinking the effects of a restructured masculinity as a symbol of national cultural transformation.

Ultimately positing that globalization has enhanced the emergence of new Chicana/o identities, Hernández cultivates important new understandings of borderlands identities and postnationalism itself.

Rock the Nation: Latin/o Identities and the Latin Rock Diaspora (Continuum May 2, 2010 ISBN-13: 978-1441168979) is a new book by roberto Avant-Mier. 

This is an alternative history of rock music, from a Latino/Hispanic perspective, which focuses on the story of the rock genre with an emphasis on identity politics. 

 "Rock the Nation" is a scholarly study of Latino/Hispanic identity through an examination of the history of rock 'n' roll music by linking Latin Rock from the U.S. with Latin Rock music from Latin America. 

As the author argues, the developments of both U.S.-based Latin Rock music and non-U.S. Latin Rock illuminate several contemporary issues and reveal interesting paradoxes with regard to identity politics (e.g., language, culture, race, class, gender and nationality). 

Music in Spanish has been used to resist English and the imposition of mainstream U.S. culture in general; yet for Latin Americans, singing in English and adopting U.S. popular culture has allowed youth to resist the hegemonic nationalisms of their own countries (i.e., countering notions of U.S. cultural imperialism). 

Therefore, in both U.S.- Latin Rock and Latin American Rock music, the rock 'n' roll genre reveals how Latino/a youth use rock music for achieving assimilation to mainstream culture(s) at the same time that they resist the hegemony of dominant culture(s).  

Professor Roberto Avant-Mier, Phd, teaches in the Communications Department at Boston College. He is currently one of a handful of scholars that are involved in any kind of research that articulates Latinos/Hispanics to rock music, and one of just a few within the U.S.  

Marcha: Latino Chicago and the Immigrant Rights Movement (Latinos in Chicago and Midwest Series).(University of Illinois Press ISBN-13: 978-0252077166). Edited by Amalia Pallares and Milda Flores-Gonzalez.

Marcha is a multidisciplinary survey of the individuals, organizations, and institutions that have given shape and power to the contemporary immigrant rights movement in Chicago. A city with longstanding historic ties to immigrant activism, Chicago has been the scene of a precedent-setting immigrant rights mobilization in 2006 and subsequent mobilizations in 2007 and 2008.

Positing Chicago as a microcosm of the immigrant rights movement on national level, these essays plumb an extraordinarily rich set of data regarding recent immigrant rights activities, defining the cause as not just a local quest for citizenship rights, but a panethnic, transnational movement. 

The result is a timely volume likely to provoke debate and advance the national conversation about immigration in innovative ways.

Amalia Pallares is an associate professor of political science and Latin American and Latino studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the author of From Peasant Struggles to Indian Resistance: The Ecuadorian Andes in the Late Twentieth Century. Nilda Flores-González is an associate professor of sociology and Latin American and Latino studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the author of School Kids, Street Kids: Identity Development in Latino Students.

The Colonias Reader: Economy, Housing and Public Health in U.S.- Mexico Border Colonias (University of Arizona Press ISBN-13: 978-0816528523). Edited by Adrian X. Esparza and Angela Joy Donelson.

The colonias of the U.S.–Mexico border form a loose network of more than 2,500 settlements, ranging in size from villages to cities, that are home to over a million people. While varying in size, all share common features: wrenching poverty, substandard housing, and public health issues approaching crisis levels. 

This book brings together scholars, professionals, and activists from a wide range of disciplines to examine the pressing issues of economic development, housing and community development, and public and environmental health in colonias of the four U.S.–Mexico border states.

The Colonias Reader is the first book to present such a broad overview of these communities, offering a glimpse into life in the colonias and the circumstances that allow them to continue to exist — and even grow — in persistent poverty. 

The contributors document the depth of existing problems in each state and describe how government agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and community activists have mobilized resources to overcome obstacles to progress.

More than reporting problems and documenting programs, the book provides conceptual frameworks that tie poverty to institutional and class-based conflicts, and even challenges the very basis of colonia designations. 

Most of these contributions move beyond portraying border residents as hapless victims of discrimination and racism, showing instead their devotion to improving their own living conditions through grassroots organizing and community leadership.

These contributions show that, despite varying degrees of success, all colonia residents aspire to a livable wage, safe and decent housing, and basic health care. The Colonias Reader showcases many situations in which these people have organized to fulfill these ambitions and provides new insight into life along the border.

About the editors

Angela J. Donelson is president of Donelson Consulting in Tucson. and co-author of Colonias in Arizona and New Mexico: Border Poverty and Community Development Solutions, also published by the University of Arizona Press. Adrian X. Esparza is an associate professor in the School of Natural Resources at the University of Arizona. He is co-author of Colonias in Arizona and New Mexico: Border Poverty and Community Development Solutions, also published by the University of Arizona Press.

The Literatures of the U.S.-Mexican War: Narrative, Time, and Identity  

(University of Texas Press ISBN-13: 978-0292722453) by Jaime Javier Rodriguez.

The literary archive of the U.S.-Mexican War (1846-1848) opens to view the conflicts and relationships across one of the most contested borders in the Americas.

Most studies of this literature focus on the war's nineteenth-century moment of national expansion.

In The Literatures of the U.S.-Mexican War, Jaime Javier Rodríguez brings the discussion forward to our own moment by charting a new path into the legacies of a military conflict embedded in the cultural cores of both nations.

Rodríguez's study moves beyond the terms of Manifest Destiny to ask a fundamental question: How do the war's literary expressions shape contemporary tensions and exchanges among Anglo Americans, Mexicans, and Mexican Americans.

By probing the war's traumas, anxieties, and consequences with a fresh attention to narrative, Rodríguez shows us the relevance of the U.S.-Mexican War to our own era of demographic and cultural change.

Reading across dime novels, frontline battle accounts, Mexican American writings and a wide range of other popular discourse about the war, Rodríguez reveals how historical awareness itself lies at the center of contemporary cultural fears of a Mexican "invasion," and how the displacements caused by the war set key terms for the ways Mexican Americans in subsequent generations would come to understand their own identities.

Further, this is also the first major comparative study that analyzes key Mexican war texts and their impact on Mexico's national identity.

About the Author: JAIME JAVIER RODRÍGUEZ is Assistant Professor of English at the University of North Texas in Denton.


More stuff on Sunday folks....... 




Ray Rojas said...

I remember hearing one time that Cynthia Haynes's photo of Jose Antonio Burciaga was his favorite.

Rock The said...

Hey, whoever did this... I'm honored to even be listed on the same page as Jose Antonio Burciaga and of course, with these other authors. Thank you so much. BTW, I just moved back to ELP and I'm a new professor at UTEP. So, I guess you could include me on the UTEP professor list. Thanks so much.